Monday, August 26, 2013

August 26th, 2013

Hello everyone - sorry I was out of town last week so I added both emails from 8/19 and 8/26 - she has a very funny story from last week that you will want to read.  She is doing so awesome - thank you for all of your support.  -Laura

Hello Family!
THIS WEEK HAS BEEN CRAZY. LIterally- I know I say that every single week- haha but it is true.  SO I am being transfered. and that is not all.  I am now an STL.  Which means I am a sister training leader.  I don't really know what I have to do or my responsibilities yet- but is is pretty crazy.  Tomorrow I am going to the Valley! Back to speaking spanish and la comida mexicana. I am headed to the area of LA VISTA. with Sister Ninetype as my new companion.  She is also an STL.  The crazy thing is that she is from Ogden- I know her from high school! Small world. I am excited- but very humbled.  I still feel like such a greenie.  But I have faith that God will help me.  Because God Never gives a task or command that we cannot fulfil. 1 nephi 3:7 -I know the Lord giveth no commandment unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he has commanded-. So, I am going to pull my big girl paties up and work harder. =D Yay the mission. Adventures all the time.  I was totally not expecting this either- This is CRAZY. literally.  Presidente Maluenda called last night and told me of my new assignment.  I thought I was going to stay and finish training Sister Petersen. But- The Lord knows best.  I love Sister Petersen SOOOO much.  Honestly she has been the most wonderful companion.  We had so much fun and the work on the Island really is starting to take off.  She is going to do great!  Ima proud MAMA. haha =D Anyways- That happened. AHH. haha =D
Haha Also i LOVE church.  The ward i am serving in is the best.  Hahahahah I am just dying right now- thinking about what happened in Gospel principles yesterday.  SO- I love gospel principals because it is just a great starting point for the new members/recent converts/investigators of the church.  We have a member named Danny-  He hasn't always been active- and was a truck driver for years.  And he is just brutally honest.  But yesterday during Gospel Principals he was sharing his testimony about tithing (the lesson was on tithing- and we were at the part that we should be happy tith payers- or we don't receive the full blessings). And Danny Starts saying "I know that we recieve special blessings from paying tithing, I have seen it.  But i am still a S~~T-head and didn't want to get out of bed for church this morning!"  haha He said the 'S' word right in the middle of church.  Ha i just sat back in my seat and smiled.  It was soooo funny. I just think that it was great that he was sharing his testimony. When i first got here he didn't say much. =D
And Jr came to church again! We had 2 really awesome lessons with him this week.  he has been reading in the book of mormon every day.  On tuesday we had a lesson with him and taught the resoration.  We went through the entire lesson and at the end invited him to pray to know that Joseph Smith was a prophet and if the book of mormon was true.  he said 'Why? I already know that jospeh smith was a prophet.' Haha i didn't know what to do with myself.  it was crazy. So the member that was with us pulled out a bazooka... Jokes.. chistes... No he pulled out Moroni 10:3-5 and read it to him.  He really focoused on the part that says ask to see if the book is 'NOT' true.  And then shared a personal experience of how he had done the challenge exactly as the scripture said and it strengthened his testimony.  So, of course, we invited JR to say the closing prayer and he says it, and right before he closed he paused for a minute.  Then he just started chuckling- then quick closed the prayer. I was like... okay what is going on- But our member said- 'You asked, didn't you?'  And Jr said that he had, and that he received an answer that the book was true already- why was he still asking about it.  So- i just thought that was a really cool experience. God is Great! 
So- i am bummed that i wont be here for the baptism on the 8th, BUT I know that God knows the plan for me and that I am being sent exactly where I need to go.  I love the Lord and I love this work.  It has been so great being a missionary.  I am SO grateful for the opportunity to serve.  Thank you Mom and Dad and family/friends for supporting me. I have learned SO much.  I know that the Savior lives.  He lived and died for us and lives again.  Through Christ we are truly cleansed.  I have seen the Atonement CHANGE people completely.  It is beautiful and wonderful.  We have a Loving Father in Heaven who cares and wants to help us.  All we have to do is ask.  With just a particle of faith- we see miracles.  I can truly testify of that.  Prayer changes things.  So pray always! =D 
Well the time is short! I have to run!  Good luck in School Kiddos!  and Shout out to my beautiful Mother-  it is her birthday this week!   Happy Birthday Momma! Love you so much!
- have a great week!
you are all in my prayers!
Con Amor
Hermana Wiser

August 19th, 2013

Sorry everyone, I was out of town so you will be getting two letters from Shayna today.  This is from last Monday.  Love you all!!  Thank you for supporting Shayna. -Laura

Hola familia!
I can't believe it is Monday again! how the time flies.  WOW this week has been INSANE. literally insane.  Lots of crazy stuff happened.  We had zone meeting and first comp training(when all of the greenies and trainers go down to the mission office for a training from Presidente and the AP's) It was really good.  I learned a lot.  Everything that President Maluenda does is in Spanish! TODO. So it is a blessing.  it is really helping me to learn Spanish! Yay.
Here is the sister-wiser-stupid-moment for the week.  SO.  We came back from 1st come training (which was Wednesday) and we found out that our fridge wasn't working.  SOOO we had to call the building manager, and the landlord, and the mission office, and the Senior couple that is over housing.  And we could not get ahold of the builing manager to come and fix it.  I guess that he does all the building maintenance- but I have never seen or heard back from the man.  So he could be an alien for all I know. Anyways- we spent way to much time on the phone trying to get a hold of someone to fix it.  We didn't want to lose the food - so we took it to a member's house that is out of town for the week and borrowed her fridge.  So we didn't lose ALL the food. just a few random things. (like our ice cream- its okay though we are trying to skinny back up... haha texas is making us a little hefty) This drama goes on for 2 days.  We finally call the elders quorum president from the ward- who is an electrician- and he was telling me to check brakers and all sorts of things that I have no idea about.  Just imagine me having a great time flipping switches in the breaker box. Lights were going on and off and all sorts of things. Anyways- he offerend to come over and look at it.  He got off work Thursday night and came to the apartment at about 9:30. He pulled out the fridge and starts looking around.  And 30 seconds into his search to find the problem- he finds that the fridge is unplugged. He just turned around and looked at us- swung the cord around a few times and said 'Uh sisters- did you try to plug it back in?' I had unplugged the stupid plug in my ipod... Sister Petersen about died- She was laughing so hard.  So was Brother Lee and his daughter.  AND everyone at church knows about it.  So I am the silly sister missionary that unplugged the fridge.  Hahaha ooppps. Adventures of the mission.  =D I learned a valuable lesson- if something doesn't work- check the plug before you call the entire world to get it fixed. =D haha.
WE FOUND A NEW INVESTIGATOR!!! His name is JR.  Roderick Jr.  We were going to visit some other potentials on the street like two weeks ago and we walked past Jr and his nephew Daniel (who is 14 years old and 6'8"-freaking tall- he makes me look like a little tiny midget. usually my 5'2" self is really tall- with the Mexicans- haha but they are all super short. love them).  Anyways- They were just hanging out outside so we stopped to talk with them- and gave them a book of Mormon.  So this week(2ish weeks after the initial contact) we had this feeling that we needed to go back and visit with them.  So we went and they came outside and we had a lesson with them.  Turns out they read the intro to the book of Mormon and ALL the testimonies and a chapter or so of first nephi. it was AWESOME.  So we start asking him about the book and what he thought and he said "I have been looking for this book my entire life!".  Can you believe that! Talk about prepared.  he accepted a baptismal date for September 8th! WAHOOO. -It was funny though- because as I was going to invite him to be baptized is said "JR, we want to invite you..." and he cut me off and said "TO CHURCH?? I would LOVE to come. but I need a ride." Sister Petersen piped up and promised that we could get him a ride and he promised right then that he would come to church. =D I love it when investigators commit themselves to church.  Best day ever.   We had another lesson with him on Friday afternoon and went over things he needs to do to prepare for baptism.  We call it a BD check list.  it is really to set expectations and see if we need to teach any of the commandments earlier on.  It went really well. Then sure enough- Sunday he showed up at church and loved it.  he said that he received an answer to his question.  It was really great =D. THEN- he came to a baptism that night and said that he is looking forward to his baptism on semptember the 8th.  We are super stoked to teach him! What a blessing! The Lord truly is leading his work here! I have seen it- by following a little prompting we found JR. It is great.
We also found Vicky and gave her the Chinese Book of Mormon. But she is leaving next week ;( sad face sad face.  We will miss her.  But we have made friends with all 8 of her Asain roommates. So that is great. =D Maybe they will be interested as well.
Well that  is about all the time I have for today- Pray for the Island! Pray for Jr! Thank you for all you do! Church is super true! and the book is blue! Yay EL LIBRO DE MORMON! 
Love you all! Onwards and upwards
-Hermana Wiser
Also- this is the last week of the transfer! I can hardly believe this transfer is already over.  Crazy. Hopefully I can stay one more on the island. =D BYE!

Monday, August 12, 2013

work of the week. CANTAR -to sing

Hola familia!
This week has been CRAZY!! All the weeks are crazy. But this one has been especially crazy. Tuesday morning super super super early I left to go to a leadership training in McAllen.  It was awesome.  Sister Petersen and Sister Vasquez(another greenie) were left up here to man the areas!  They did wonderful.  Ha sister Petersen was a little nervous- but she is a champ and did really great work on the island when I was gone.  The three day training constited of zone leaders, district leaders, STL's, and trainers- sitting in the chapel pretty much all day for three days strait.  It was like everything we learned in the MTC in three days.  AND it was ALL in spanish! Yeah for a chilean mission president! So it was like drinking from a hispanic fire hose.  great. ;) They taught a bunch of fundamentals of missionary work and then we would do role plays.  We also learned a lot from the scriptures.  President Maluenda is AMAZING.  He is such a great President.  I learn so much every time he pulls out the  scriptures.  The zone leaders from brownsville did a really cool training about following/ leaning to follow the impressions of the spirit.  They compared it to learning a language.  In order to learn a language you have to read, write, speak and listen.  Same exact thing with the spirit. We need to read the scriptures with the spirit there to learn from it, we need to speak the words that the spirit gives to our minds.  We need to listen- LISTEN- and then follow the promptings we receive. by doing those things it fine tunes our ability to hear and respond to the spirit.   It was a great parallel and helped me relate to it.  I would go into more detail... but i forgot my scripture journal. such is life.  Anyways- it really is amazing though.  There have been SO many time on my mission when i have followed a little prompting and we have found people home, or found someone that we needed to find right at that moment.  It really is amazing. i have a new favorite phrase. 'Yo no sabia, pero El Senor sabe" - I don't know, but the Lord knows. I really like it.  Because the lord always knows.  Especially with investigators.  We have NO idea what they need sometimes- but the lord does, and when we are worthy instruments in his hands everything works out.  =D love it.
So another great thing! when i was at the training we got to go out and work in the evenings in the McAllen Zone.  and i got to go back to DONNA!  I was so happy.  So it was Me, Sister Andersen(from the MTC) Sister Sanders(my mission mom) and Sister Dudding(the STL from last transfer). And they have this family that they are teaching right now.  There are a 10. The grandparents- then two brothers- Juan and Pepe.  Juan and pepe both speak only spanish and their wives (jennifer and sharon) speak only English. So i that makes communication a little difficult i am sure- But whateves. Sister Sanders and Sister dudding had been working with them for about a week. and Sharon, Jennifer and all the kids were solid- but Pepe and Juan were being difficult.  So the plan was to divide and conquer. Sister Dudding and Sister Andersen were going to go to Pepe and Sharon's house then we were going to go to Juan and Jennifers house.  But we had this feeling that we all needed to stop by Pepe's house first.  So we get out and he is in the driveway- so we get out and start talking to him.  Sister Sanders is a BOSS and started teaching him.  THEN- like 2 minutes later Juan and Jennifer drive up! THE SPIRIT! -anyways so we are all out there talking and Sis Dudding and Sis Andersen go inside and are talking to sharon and pepe.  And sister Sanders and i are outside talking with Jennifer and Juan. and this is totally is spanish- and yes we were on splits at the same house. It was craziness.  So we start talking to Juan and he was saying  that he never felt the spirit in his life, and God wouldn't accept him because of his super loco cray cray past(he was in jail for a while and he is usually drunk.) AND the entire time Jennifer is yelling at him "Juan! you just have to change your life! for your kids and for yourself!' and So it was a battle of spanish and english yelling for a while there. So we are trying to teach both of them from the scriptures and sister Sanders pulls out enos and starts reading it with juan.  SO I go over and start reading it with Jennifer.  At this point the other sisters, pepe sharon and ALL the crazy children are back outside. and they were basically all in a semi-circle around sister sanders and me. Juan in the middle of the circle.  Jennifer would'nt stop yelling at Juan- sp Sister Dudding pulls her aside-starts teaching about the word of wisdom and COMMITTS her to live the word of wisdom. And Sister Sanders and i just completely focused on Juan.  It was awesome.  I shared the STRONGEST testimony of my life about the savior and the atonement.  How Christ really can heal us and help us change our lives. It was amazing becuase as soon as i started testifying EVERYONE else stopped doing whatever they were doing and started listening- it was SO quiet. The spirit was there so strong. I just had tears streaming down my face. It was really amazing. and Juan-who was kind of confrontational before was completely changed.  He was listening so intently.  I like to use an analogy, and i usually say something like 'Christ is standing right infront of you- holding out his hand- All you have to do is take it." so i did that and as i said 'holding out his hand' i put my hand out infront of me. and he reached out and took my hand! COOLEST THING EVER. Sister sanders then backed up my testimony and I invited him to be baptized.  He is preparing for september 8!! BAUTISMO!  it was the coolest/craziest/espanglish encounter ever.  But it was amazing. The Lord truly sends his missionaries to prepared people. (that was also a referral- thank you referrals) It was such a testimony builder for me.  And it was all in spanish and i new what was going on. GIFT OF TONGUES.
THEN- Saturday morning we got a call from the AP's and they said President wanted us to go down and sing in a meeting he was speaking at! So we got to sing when president talked sunday morning.  There were 8 of us, and a cello, and an elder on the pano.  Sister Garry was there singing soprano with me.  It was awesome. just like old times. It was a great sacrament meeting.  Then we stayed for the next ward and sang it again in Spanish.  I love being a missionary.  It was probably the most random sunday of my entire mission. Then all 12 of the missionaries that participated- or had a companion participating- got to go to lunch at the mission home.  It was great! We got to know the Maluenda children.  And i played the guitar and sang.  It was kinda like a singing time.  We sang hymns together.  And president really encouraged us to use our talents.  Every human that has a guitar here- gets to hear a song from me. =D  it has been fun.  It was a great experience.
Like i said- it was a crazy week! But great.
I have to run! But i love you all- Hopefully the story makes sense. Just know that i love you and i am praying for you.  I know my Savior lives. Through Christ ALL things are possible.  He loves us and cares for us.  and when we reach out and take his hand he will pull us through whatever trial we are going through.  How great the goodness of our God! I love being a missionary! I love the Gospel! God bless!
-Hermana Wiser

Thursday, August 8, 2013

August 5, 2013 - Howdy Y'all! its august?? Whaaaaa?

This is the picture of the first few moments with sister petersen! She was fresh of the transfer van from the MTC! Love her! Momma Petersen- you have raised a great daughter!

This is my area! pretty! this is off the street hawksnest. so lovely. all the back yards are like this. almost. haha most people just drive their boat from the back yard. its fine. haha

Zone lunch by the water! we love the water! haha as long as we don't touch it. we get asked all the time out here if we are allowed to swim. it starts a lot of conversations. =D  

Mirror photo- to match sterlings. Hah lookin good elder wiser! =D too bad you don't have pretty flowers in your hair. ;)
MOM SENT ME BREAD!! BEST DAY EVER!! i enjoyed every bite. #perksofbeingastatesidemissionary  =D thanks momma -also i love the new skirt. do you see it? haha great huh? i really really like it. in the back ground you can kinda see the apartment.

second picture- we went to the SELENA museum. she was a latina singer that was from corpus christi. and then she died. so they have a museum(cant spellt his word...) of her and all her weird clothes and small barbies of her.  interesting. definatly an experience!

first picture- we found a random little park that had flowers. so naturally we took a picture! haha the funny part is that the rest of the park is nothing but weeds and cement and rocks. So- there is a little peice of heaven where-ever you go. =D we enjoyed the little break from walking! Love sister Petersen!! She is the best!

first picture- last night we went to a less active and she has these flowers planted everywhere! so she made a little thing to put fresh flowers in our hair! fun!

Hola familia!
It has been a crazy week! This week has gone by so fast! I feel like i just finished p-day. Cray cray. Anyways.  This week was really great. God is blessing us with so many miracles!  Literally, if i even tried to write them all down this email would take YEARS to read. So I will just include a few from the week.  So- We have a recent convert that was baptized in april.  So we still go by occationally and share things with him, see if he has questions.  And he has 2 adorable children.  David-5 and Katie-3.  They are so dang cute. i will try to include a picture sometime.  So this week we set up a lesson with Brother Devers and we knew his kids were going to be there, so we planned this lesson around the kids.  We focused on baptism and the Holy Ghost.  And did a couple of activities with them.  For Baptism we did a little object lesson. you get a bowl of water and talk about how it is clean and pure water. then as we sin the water gets dirty.  We would pour water in to represent the sin. Then we got dish soap- like to hand wash dishes- and put it on their finger and when they dip their finger in the water ALL the pepper goes to the side of the dish.  They thought it was magic.  haha try it out. it is a fun little activity.  Anyways it represents baptism- how when we go under the water we come out clean.  Then we did an activity where we had a blind fold (one of my scarfs) and we brought treats for them (Thank you Grandma Wiser for the skittles).  We compared the treats to heaven, and that we cant find heaven without the Holy Ghost.  So we blindfolded David and had his dad act as the holy ghost and lead him to heaven.  It was funny. When david put the scarf over his eyes, we asked him if he could see.  He said no, but said "i can't see, but i can smell. and this THING smells like neck." haha we got a good laugh out of that... stinky neck. oops.
It was really fun.  Then after the little lesson we made some paper air planes with them and had contest to see who could go the furthest.  They are darling! I love them. 
Saturday we had exchanges with our STL's(sister training leaders) So sister Myers came to the Island and I was seperated from Sister Petersen.  ha it is kinda weird to be without your companion! I called sister Myers by sister petersen's name a handful of times.  We walked ALOT on saturday. And i got fried. i looked 'cherry red'.  haha welcome to 'corpus crispy'! oh man, my jokes are good. So I no longer really white, i am kinda redish right now.  But it was an awesome exchange i learned a ton.  That is the great thing about exchanges and things. ya learn so much!
We swapped back saturday night and caugh up on the days activites.  I love sister Petersen! Best Companion ever. We really have way to much fun together.
Sunday we ovbiously went to church. As missionaries we literally live at the church on sundays.  I always love fast and testimony sundays.  Our members are wonderful.  Our ward chorister left this past week, so sister petersen and I are doing the music in Sacrament meeting. She leads and i play the organ. It is fun. =D  we always go and sit down with the congregation after the music. because it is awkward on the stand sometimes.  And near the end of the meeting- little katie came over and found us.  She knows that i keep sticky notes in my planner and told me that she 'needed' to color.  so she sat between sister Petersen and I and colored.  After every picture she colored she would hand it to Sister Petersen and say 'Here, a picture for you." then smile. She is adorable. By the end of the meetin i think Sis Petersen had like 10 sitky notes. So the time came for us to do the music.  So sister Petersen and i get up to go and of course Katie follows us! I had already started playing the introduction of the song and appeared out of no where and climbed up right next to me. and instantly started talking to me, asking me questions like- 'can i push this button right here?' 'how about this one?'  So the entire time i am playing i am taking to 3 year old katie. I promised her that after the prayer she could push a button.  And she never touched a button.  Then after the prayer i let her change a few of the settings while i was playing (prelude?) postlude. ( i am not sure what that is called..the music after the prayer.) She is sweet! I love her family! 
I also have a three day leadership training that i am going to tomorrow through thursday night.  It should be great! I am sure i will have ALL the stories for you. =D
Basically- being a missionary is the best thing ever.  =D  I love you all! hope you have a fantastic week.  The church is true and the book is blue. =D I love the book of mormon with all my heart! I should finish it again in the next week or so. By reading the scriptures every day we truly come closer to Christ. Reading every day blessed with the spirit. I feel so blessed that we have the scriptures.  It took a lot of sacrifice to get them here.  lets not forget about them!   Joseph Smith was the prophet of the restoration, called of God.  We have a current Prophet on the earth today. When we follow his guidance we will not be lost.  How wonderfully blessed we are! Love you all
Until Next week!
Onward and Upward!
Hermana Wiser